Valley Metro opens new 'raindrop' shelter

Posted on December 8, 2009

[IMAGE]MAC.jpg[/IMAGE]Phoenix-based Valley Metro introduced its new locally designed transit stop at the southeast corner of Main and Center streets.

The new stop, which makes movement and sound occur from the wind, features shiny chrome raindrops that hang from the ceiling, and is one of 26 stations recently opened that provide a special place for passengers to wait until the next Valley Metro bus arrives. The stop serves the 12-mile LINK bus service, as well as bus route 40.

"The Rain Shelter idea emerged as a playful way to relate to the desert and engage the imagination. The raindrops themselves can sway in the breeze and reflect colors and light from their surroundings and the transit passengers using the shelter," said shelter-designer and artist, Laurie Lundquist.

Design and construction was completed by TranSystems, A Dye Design and Magnum Companies.

The remaining 25 stations, located at least every one mile along both sides of Main Street and Power Road, utilize a special design for Valley Metro bus stops that incorporate passenger safety and protection from the elements, regardless of the season. Fiberglass louvers support the main structure of into the shelters allowing access to the breezes in the summer, yet providing plenty of warmth from the winter sun.

A band of light at the top of the station helps identify the shelter at night, and lights in the sidewalk show the driver and passengers where the bus doors will be located to assist with nighttime boarding. In the future, the stations will also have real time next bus information and fare vending machines, allowing passengers to purchase fares in advance saving time and money.

The LINK bus service and its 26 stations, as well as the new Superstition Springs Transit Center, are part of the Valley Metro regional transit system that is being supported by Proposition 400 funds that voters approved in 2004.

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